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He Said/She Said: Solheim Cup or Tour Champ.?

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Welcome to the first edition of He Said/She Said, where GolfChannel.com's Golf Guy and 'Birdie' Bailey Mosier step to the tee box to argue all things golf. Or not golf.

On the tee ... Which is the better event: the ladies battling for our country at the Solheim Cup, or the PGA Tour stars playing for all the marbles at East Lake?

By The Golf Guy

Solheim Cup or Tour Championship? That’s like asking me Ding Dongs or Twinkies?  Both are so darn yummy, but if I had to choose just one to watch on TV, I’m going with the Tour Championship.

Yes, I’m fully aware that it is hard to beat team competitions in golf (see: Ryder Cup, although the Solheim Cup certainly is not even in the same ballpark as the men’s version). And the fact that the Solheim comes around only every two years does add a little edge to it. But for me, the Tour Championship offers up the best of the best – and the ultimate limited field to boot.

And while I would love to make one more major tweak to the FedEx Cup format – once you get to the Tour Championship, the winner at East Lake is just that … the winner – I still really enjoy a stroke-play format to decide tournaments. Throw in the fact that year after year, I – a diehard TV golf viewer – get to know the back nine at East Lake and start understanding all the scenarios that come into play down the stretch. Much like the rest of us have that same understanding every spring with that other golf course in Georgia.

And while unscripted drama is my end all and be all when it comes to golf, it undoubtedly helps that the world’s best are front and center. The hottest player on the planet, Webb Simpson, is in the mix; world No. 1 Luke Donald is right there as well; and golf’s version of John Wayne, Dustin Johnson, has his say on the outcome. Plus, Matt Kuchar – the American version of Japan’s Shigeki ‘The Smiling Assassin’ Maruyama – also should be there come Sunday afternoon.

And I will say this: If the LPGA could figure out a way to include Asia and the rest of the world in a three-team format to decide the Solheim Cup, my vote might ultimately be swayed.

Until then, I go with the Tour Championship.

And did I mention that Coca-Cola is the presenting sponsor of the Tour Championship? Can you say, ‘Rum and Coke?’ I know I can.

 

By Birdie Bailey Mosier

Halley’s Comet sightings, permanent weight loss, snow in Florida and the Solheim Cup. What do these things have in common? They’re all rare, so on the infrequent occasions they do come around, they should be appreciated and enjoyed.

It's a close debate as to which is this week’s better event – the Solheim Cup or Tour Championship – and while arguments for both are strong, you don’t have to look far to find reasons to go Solheim.

This year’s Solheim teams include not only the biggest names in women’s golf, they represent the most likable and alluring personalities as well. Included in the mix are America’s sweetheart, an American firecracker, the Gal next door and sweet Caroline.

Charisma, appeal, charm, passion, talent. Oh yeah, the storylines aren’t lacking, either.

If the underdog Europeans lose this year, it will mark an entire decade they’ve gone without hoisting the Cup. If that happens, the ‘U.S. vs. Everyone Else’ argument (to include players from Asia, Australia and Latin America) gains further credence and the possibility that the Solheim Cup takes on some other form in the future becomes a very real scenario.

U.S. captain Rosie Jones dubbed LPGA rookie Ryann O’Toole one of her two captain’s picks and has since received flak for making one of the more questionable and unsubstantiated picks in all of Solheim history. Turns out, the critics weren’t far off. Since being named to the team, O’Toole has missed three consecutive cuts, recording rounds of 75, 79, 73, 81, 76 and 74. While her faltering may make for good TV, it won’t help America retain the Cup.

And of course, the last and most compelling aspect of the Solheim Cup is that the teams are playing for glory, not money. They are there to represent their country, their tour and the game.

These ladies are playing for pride, not personal gain, with the spotlight of a nation cast on them.

The reasons to watch the Solheim Cup are many. Reasons that can’t be bought for $10 million.